I feel it's a complicated wording question.

I am an international student studying in the UK as a PhD student. I received a research prize from an Italian academic society for training purposes (I am needed to spend a month in Italy doing research). The prize is worth €3000 and subject to 30% Italian income taxation.

The coordinator from the society indicated that I could ask for a certificate of residence from the UK tax authority to avoid double taxation. I am still very perplexed about my situation.

  1. Would I be taxed in the UK? (I am also a recipient of a PhD tax-free studentship)

  2. Has anyone ever required the certificate from the HMRC? Can you please share your experience and the process? I am in Italy now so I am not sure what I could do.

  3. If the Italian side deducts the taxation, will I be able to claim it back when I return to the UK?

  4. Is there any advice that I should take when asking from the HMRC

Thank you!

  • What if any other sources of income do you have? IIRC PHD stipends in the UK are not taxable and it's rare for a PhD student in the UK to earn enough other income to be liable for any income tax. Jan 14, 2017 at 20:11
  • It has been resolved. Turned out I dont have to pay. Thanks everyone
    – Khan
    Jan 15, 2017 at 14:29

2 Answers 2


There is no clear answer, it might be or not be. Depends a lot on your situation.

1)Yes it is taxable but as Italy has a double taxation agreement with UK, you might not have to pay. You can get a detailed guidance on the HMRC website.

2) Apply here for a certificate of residence

3)You can only claim back if Italy taxes you more than UK would. If it is less than you will have to pay the remaining portion to HMRC. You do this in the self assessment form/tax return/call up HMRC.

4)Tell the truth, explain your whole scenario and don't withheld relevant information assuming you may lower you tax by doing so.

  • thank you very much. For 1) if I am a foreign student, will it be exempt from tax as the money goes to my education purpose expense?
    – Khan
    Jul 19, 2016 at 10:44

It is unlikely that UK tax will be due on the money -- see here:

Foreign students usually don’t pay UK tax on foreign income or gains, as long as they’re used for course fees or living costs

But if the UK doesn't tax you on the money then double-taxation agreements probably won't apply, and so any Italian tax due will be payable.

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